Tuesday, September 29, 2009

New IR Poll: 7-pt Conservative Lead

Ipsos-Reid has released a new poll, taken between September 22 and September 24 and involving 1,001 Canadians.

It further confirms the findings of the other polling houses. In fact, the polls that have been released since last Thursday have been remarkably consistent. Here are the national results:

Conservatives - 37%
Liberals - 30%
New Democrats - 14%
Bloc Quebecois - 9%
Greens - 9%

This really is what we've been seeing all week. The regional results also echo most of what the other polls have found.

In British Columbia, the Conservatives lead with 36% but the Liberals are doing very well at 32%. The NDP, at 22%, is falling behind. The Greens also struggled in this province with 9%.

Alberta has 61% for the Conservatives, 16% for the Liberals, 13% for the Greens, and 10% for the NDP.

The Prairies has a very good 53% for the Conservatives, followed by 23% for the Liberals and 15% for the NDP.

The Conservatives have again polled over 40% in Ontario, with 43%. The Liberals are 10-points behind at 33%. The NDP is at 14%. This has been a trend we've seen all week. The Conservative lead is anywhere from five to ten points over the Liberals in the most important province in the country.

In Quebec, the Bloc is back to where it usually is at 37%. The Liberals are at 28% and the Conservatives at 17%. The NDP is at 10%. These, too, are surprisingly consistent results.

In Atlantic Canada, the Liberals are far ahead with 47%. This is something we've seen as well. Clearly, while the Liberals seem to be falling in Ontario and a little in Quebec, the political manoeuvres in Ottawa have pushed them well ahead in Atlantic Canada. This is confirmed by the leadership and "election yes-or-no" polls we've seen in the region. The Conservatives are at 33%, a good result, while the NDP is at 13%, disastrous.

This poll would result in the following seat totals:

Conservatives - 146
Liberals - 95
Bloc Quebecois - 49
New Democrats - 18

Again, the Tories still can't get to majority territory. They posted excellent numbers in Alberta, the Prairies, Ontario, and Atlantic Canada. But as I've said on numerous occasions, you can't win a majority without Quebec.

This electoral result would also be very bad on Jack Layton's political career. One wonders if Michael Ignatieff would be safe as leader if he increased his caucus by 20 MPs.

The Liberals have put forward a short and sweet non-confidence motion, to be voted on at the end of the week. Gilles Duceppe has already committed his party to it, but Layton has decided to support the government. So, that pretty much bars an election this fall. The NDP will have to stick to this new principle of waiting for the EI-reform to become law, meaning the government is safe for at least a month. Then when November rolls around, the idea of sending people to the polls during the Christmas season will likely keep us out of an election as well. Then in January, an election would interfere with the Vancouver Olympics, which gives the government life until the end of February.

That means it is extremely unlikely that we would have an election until March. And, at that point, I'm sure someone will think of an excuse not to send people to the polls. "It's Spring! We can't ask people to vote when the flowers are blooming."